RBEI MASTER COURSES: EQUINE MANAGEMENT:
PADDOCKING & STABLE MANAGEMENT 4
Additional to providing a safe and stimulating environment for your horse, you must also provide the horse with a space they are able to feel completely free and unhindered within.
One thing we must grasp is the fact these horses are our captives, expected to perform and act as we so desire when we so desire. To balance the mental strain of this on horses we must provide an equally matching free environment wherein the horse can switch off, be a horse and do whatever it likes when it likes on it's terms.
Providing an environment that is as close to the horses natural wild environment safely should be the goal, to keep the horses happy and content. Horses very much enjoy having access to a dam or river to play and wash themselves in. Trees and shrubs, undulating land with different surfaces to experience, friends, interesting things to see and do.
Part of the reason horses can be so spooky with things is the lack of natural diversity present in their home environment provided.
It is also VERY important to leave your horse alone to be a horse in it's own space for large chunks of time. It is VERY important to NEVER discipline a horse while they are on their turf doing their thing (unless they have directly and seriously attacked you in some manner).
A horses needs to be allowed to be all and every little bit the horse it is and feel freedom when it is in it's paddock and not caught to be ridden or to do things with you. A common mistake people make is standing on the the other side of a horses fence and grunting commands and orders and discipline while the horse is in it's space doing it's own thing. When a horse is free you must allow them the completeness of that freedom. There is no reason to try to control your horses behaviour while they are in a paddock free.
NEVER micro manage or try to control them in their own time and space. It will teach them to ignore you and to become annoyed with you. When a horse is free in it's environment that is IT'S time not yours. It has the right to be completely free during this time and BE a horse, without this freedom balance you will end up with a frustrated, angry, rebellious horse. It is CRITICAL to balanced horse and paddock management.
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